15 Nov MLB Offseason Discussion: National League West
By: Shane Thompson
NL West 2016 Recap:
Los Angeles: 91-71 — Division Winner
San Francisco: 87-75 (4.0 GB) — Wild Card
Colorado: 75-87 (16 GB)
Arizona: 69-93 (22 GB)
San Diego: 68-94 (23 GB)
I believe that this division was more of disappointments than success. The Rockies have been in limbo to rebuild or move forward with the resources they have. Arizona went out and spent money along with trading their top prospect in Dansby Swanson for pitching, which led them to under achieve. The Padres swung for the fences in 2015 with the signing of James Shields and trading for Justin and Melvin Upton Jr. they still had some pieces leftover going into the 2016 but were able to move them for prospects. San Francisco was the most disappointing of all, with stacking their starting pitching, signing their core pieces. I believe in the “bad news first” while giving out information and finishing up with positive reinforcement and good news.
San Francisco Giants
Bad News- The Giants had the most blown saves in all of Major League Baseball with 29. Big hits were very hard to come by as they were in the bottom half of the league in batting average with runners in scoring position.
Good news- the starting staff is full in tact and even bolstered it with the trade for Matt Moore as a possible steal for a fifth starter.
Los Angeles Dodgers
Bad News-lots of pressure on the Dodgers to resign Kelley Jansen and/or some help in the bullpen as Dave Roberts set an MLB record for trips to the mound for pitching changes at 606 times. Yikes.
Good News- A full season for Seager in the books with winning the rookie of the year award unanimously. Despite an injury plagued season, they showed a ton of grit while advancing the the National League Championship Series.
San Diego Padres
Bad News- As a team that plays in a pitchers ballpark, they managed to have a 4.43 team ERA with the pitcher with the most wins only had 9.
Good News- There is some talent there. Hunter Renfroe has shown flashes of being a top tier right fielder in a hurry. Wil Myers had 28 home runs and also swiped 28 bags.
Bad News- they have the names, the pitching prospects. It was “supposed” to be there time. Zack Greinke and Shelby had nightmare seasons while A.J. Pollock couldn’t stay on the field from the get go.
Good News- This team can flat out rake. Jake Lamb has a breakout year and Jean Segura was showing forms of the player most experts thought he can be.
Bad News- Sadly, it’s been a broken record with this team. You can’t pitch, you can’t win. The bullpen has been getting worn out due to starters not making into or through the fifth inning.
Good News- the story is, well, Trevor Story. He was just as good as Corey Seager before having season ending thumb surgery. The usual suspects are doing damage to opposing pitchers (Carlos Gonzalez, Arenado, Blackmon and DJ Lemahieu)
Team Needs: By Position
LA Dodgers: 3B, 2B, Corner OF, CL (If no Kenley)
SF Giants: CL, Corner OF, 3B
COL Rockies: 2 SP, 1B
ARZ Diamondbacks: 1 RP, 1 SP, C
SD Padres: 2 SP, 1 RP, MI
Players To Target:
Re sign: CL Jansen and 3B Turner
Target: RF Jose Bautista and SP Doug Fister
Target: CL Melancon, OF Cespedes,
Trade For: 3B Longoria
Target: 1B Trumbo/Napoli, SP Fister/Sabathia
Target: C Ramos, SP Holland/Cashner, RP Feliz
Target: SP Anderson/Hammel, RP Cassila,
1) Turner leaves Dodgers, Dodgers swoop in and trade for longoria (stealing him from the Giants)
2) Giants win 2017 western division
3) D-Backs win 88 games in 2017 and still miss playoffs
All in all, the NL West is a highly competitive division. 2017 should be another exciting season, with at least 3 of the 5 teams having a real shot at the post season. The Padres need some more offense and the Rockies need more pitching before either team can be considered as a contender.